Dry Jan & what I really think about it

 

Every January its the same thing – no booze for 31 days, depressing miserable weather (UK) and the people of London moaning about how dark and cold it is while wishing it was summer again (whoops that might be just me).

I’ve been speaking to a number of friends over the last few weeks who have decided to partake in going dry for the month, which got me thinking, what on earth is dry Jan and what is the purpose of it all? After doing some serious research, I decided to write a post about the real health benefits and why people seem to think they are doing their bodies a favour. 

I’m not normally one to post anything overly opiononated but I’m up for a bit of a debate about this one, so please feel free to comment below or give me some feedback 🙂 please note that I am not a specialised doctor or a nutritionist but I do have some common sense and I do know how to look after myself. 

As most of you may know (or not) that i’ve decided to lay off the booze, not because of dry January at all. I’m actually in the process of making some serious lifestyle changes (I have been since October last year) which means CUTTING BACK on the booze to a certain extent. Yes, I am definitely staying far clear of it for this month, and perhaps for most of February, maybe even March, but i’m not going to restrict myself permanently, be made to feel guilty for a slip up or set myself up with unrealistic goals.

As far as I’m concerned its all about EIM. Everything in moderation for the long version. Binge drinking has always been a bad habit of mine since I was about 19 years old and i’m definitely not alone on this. I am now 34 and soon to be approaching 35 in the coming months and to be honest with you, getting stupidly drunk is not a great look when you are approaching your mid 30’s. Of course you still need to live your life and have some good old fun or a blow out as Brits call it  – I get it…. but doing this all the time (lets be real here) is not doing me or you any favours long term. We should still be able to go out and have an amazing time without drowning ourselves in bottles of wine, vodka, beer etc without being labelled as boring or no fun and after 15 years of partying, I’ve done and seen it all with many excruciating hangovers and its safe to say, i’m not really missing it. 

Being a blogger in London makes it somewhat difficult to avoid – but it can be done. I’m always invited to loads of events with plenty of bubbles, wine, cocktails, you name it and although this sounds very lavish and enjoyable, it can be utterly exhausting. It’s very hard to say no, but eventually you do get to that point where the novelty just wears off. This is purely because, (myself in particular) you start to hit a wall and your body and mind eventually feel like a bag of you know what. I know for a fact, that I have a tendency of becoming severely unproductive and unmotivated, I cant focus properly at work or even think about doing any exercise. Im tired, groggy and worst of all – moody! Who can relate to this? 

Lets be honest, most of us after the 31st of January (me included) one way or another, have gone out and gotten completely tanked up on what we call a retox or an impulsive binge, simply because we have restricted ourselves so badly the previous month, that we now must simply get back to the ‘normal’ life of boozing it up and forgetting just how awful those last 31 days were. The sad reality is, is that most of us will then make up for lost time over the next 11 months and then we will do it all over again, hoping that it will help us in some way? Im not so sure about that. 

The thing about doing dry January is most of us don’t realise that by avoiding drinking for one month only, is going to have very little health benefits. Sorry about that. Although I am not aware of what most would like to get out of this or achieve health wise, I’m guessing that it could be along the lines of feeling less bloated, loosing weight, steering clear of junk food, being clearer in the head and slightly more productive etc etc etc but in reality, there are no significant health benefits whatsoever unless you decide to perhaps give it up completely. 

Maybe some of you binged over Christmas.. shit happens but don’t whinge about it, perhaps this year look at cutting back slightly so the overpowering guilt is not there come January. I had a bit of a ‘blow out’ over NYE but it didn’t bother me one bit because I had the best time ever and sometimes it is just has to be done. 

Personally I think that if you want to give up drinking, then just do it. Not for a month, not even for 6 months. For those who don’t care or happen to think its the most ridiculous thing ever, no worries, its not that much of a big deal anyway just live your life how you want it to be. 

As I mentioned previously, i’ve always been about the EIM – eating well, exercising, no diets, taking supplements, getting some sun and no over-stressing. I’ve never been overweight, my weight is normal for my height. I have no health problems, allergies and I’m rarely sick.  In fact, the only negative thought that comes to mind is my anxiety, which most of the time is caused from a big night, lack of sleep and too much alcohol (there you go). 

I’ll always enjoy a glass of wine here and there, maybe the odd cocktail but in all honesty its not a necessity or priority in my life anymore. If you do what’s right for you and your health in general, then dry Jan shouldn’t really apply 😉 Be kind to YOU!

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